The Imagine Forum: Nordic Solidarity for Peace

Höfði Reykjavík Peace Centre

The Imagine Forum: Nordic Solidarity for Peace, was held 10 - 11 October 2023 in Harpa conference center in Reykjavík, Iceland.


Programme click here

The debate on peace, disarmament and the peaceful resolution of conflicts has rarely been more important. Peace is a prerequisite for well-being, equality, social stability as well as environmental and human rights protection. The Imagine Forum was hosted by Höfði Reykjavík Peace Centre in collaboration with The Icelandic Presidency for the Nordic Council of Ministers, in order to create a platform to discuss the future vision of the Nordic countries for sustainable peace.

Nordic Solidarity for Peace

The Icelandic Presidency paid special attention to the importance of peace as the prerequisite for welfare, human rights, and environmental protection. The aim of the conference in Reykjavík was to bring together a dynamic group of creative thinkers to engage in an intergenerational dialogue on how we can strengthen Nordic cooperation for peace.

The effects of Russia's illegal invasion in Ukraine are being felt across Europe and beyond, and the security situation in the West has changed completely. The discussion on peace, disarmament and the peaceful resolution of disputes has therefore rarely been more important. These circumstances make the solidarity and cooperation of the Nordic nations vitally important. The fight against the dangers of climate crisis is also one of the main foundations for welfare and safety, and peace similarly is the basis for being able to fight against climate crisis, maintain social stability and increase equity.

It is vital that the Nordic countries work together to put climate issues on the agenda in a decisive way. The Nordic countries can and should be a strong force for peace on the international arena, advocating for international agreements on peace and disarmament, based on their history of close cooperation when it comes to welfare, democracy and human rights.

Thank you to those who joined us in Reykjavík for a discussion on the Nordic vision for peace!

Watch the panels from the conference below

Opening session: How Can We Achieve Sustainable Peace?

Opening remarks by Katrín Jakobsdóttir, Prime Minister of Iceland, and Guðmundur Ingi Guðbrandsson, Minister for Nordic Cooperation and Minister of Social Affairs and the Labour Market. Keynote address by Amina J Mohammed, Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations and Chair of the United Nations Sustainable Development Group

Nordic Solidarity for Peace: The Way Forward

Opening remarks Anne Beathe Tvinnereim, Minister for Nordic Cooperation and Minister of International Development, Norway, and Guðmundur Ingi Guðbrandsson

Panel discussion include Anine Hagemann, Jannie Lilja, Louise Olsson, Marko Lehti, and Pia Hansson

Global Challenges to Peace in the 21st Century

Address by Þórdís Kolbrún Reykfjörð Gylfadóttir, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Iceland

Participants of the panel are Bruno Stagno Ugarte, Human Rights Watch, Ingibjörg Sólrún Gísladóttir, former Minister for Foreign Affairs Iceland, and Sanam Naraghi Anderlini, founder and CEO of ICAN

The Role of Cities in Promoting Peace

Panel discussion include Andriy Sadovyi, Mayor of Lviv, Dagur B. Eggertsson, Mayor of Reykjavík, Juhana Vartiainen, Mayor of Helsinki

Address by Jeppe Albers, Executive Director at Nordic Safe Cities

Introduction of Mayors for Peace Children’s Art Competition “Peaceful Towns”

Spotlight Session – The Rollback of Women's Rights in Afghanistan: How to Negotiate a Way Forward

Mahbouba Seraj, Afghan Journalist and Women Rights Activist and Pashtana Durrani, Executive Director of LEARN Afghan and Human Rights Activist

The Peace and Security Implications of Climate Change for the Nordic Region

Participants of the panel include Cedric de Coning, Research Professor, NUPI, Emma Hakala, Senior Research Fellow, FIIA, Kyungmee Kim, Senior Researcher, SIPRI, Minoo Koefoed, Senior Research Fellow, NUPI, and Tobias Etzold, Senior Research Fellow in the Research Group for Security and Defense at NUPI

Art as an Ecosystem for Sustainable Peace and Social Justice

Khaled Barakeh, Conceptual artist and Cultural activist, Lisa Glybchenko, PhD researcher and Entrepreneur in Visual Peace Technology, Samara Bahrami, Singer and Songwriter

New Conflict Constellations, New Conflict-Resolution Thinking?

Dino Krause, Postdoc Researcher at DIIS, Justine Chambers, Postdoctoral research fellow at DIIS, and Isabel Bramsen, Director of Peace and Conflict Studies and Associate Professor at Lund University

Feminist Approaches to Nordic Peace

Gunhild Hoogensen Gjørv, Professor of peace and conflict studies at the Centre for Peace Studies, UiT, Louise Olsson, Research Director, at Peace Research Institute Oslo, Louise Ridden, Postdoctoral researcher, Tampere University, and Silja Bára Ómarsdóttir, Professor of International Relations University of Iceland

Closing Session - Nordic Peace Revisited

Hanna Klinge, Deputy CEO at CMI, Héðinn Halldórsson, Communications Advisor, WHO Regional Office for Europe, Isabel Bramsen, and Marko Lehti, Research Director of Tampere Peace Research Institute (TAPRI)

Closing remarks Anne Elizabeth Jensdatter, Vice President of the Nordic Youth Council